This is really bad press. A PR nightmare for any company.
Infosys has time and again dealt with a lot of these issues but this one is vicious and evil. It is very rare that India Inc gets embroiled in controversies of such magnitude and this vitriolic has shocked one and all. What does one do when such right-winged opinions mar the reputation of a company? Should politics be allowed to percolate into the working of companies?
The opinions expressed in the now infamous article shocked one to the core – and that is what is worrying India Inc – will they be punished the same way if their product does not work? If Marico’s Parachute Hair Oil suddenly develops leaky bottles, will they also be targeted the same way? In Dec’20, RBI had barred HDFC Bank from launching new digital banking initiatives and issuing new credit cards due to multiple glitches in the bank's internet and mobile banking systems over the past two years. Did the bank go through such nightmarish bad press?
This is not the first time that mass produced items have failed but never has any company faced this kind of a backlash. Why does Infosys evoke such strong responses? Anti-national and Infosys? In many ways, it would not be far fetched to say that it is Infosys which put India’s IT prowess on the global map; TCS came in later.
Having said all this, one thing we all agree on is that Infosys has time and again botched up on major Govt projects. First was in 2013, when the Rs.357 crore project to develop the MCA’s e-governance portal and users faced major technical issues. It was complete mental torture for companies to fill in the required forms and submit it. Then in 2015, it was the Rs.1380 crore GST project and this time around traders pulled at their hair due to major technical glitches. And now the Income Tax portal where people across the country have complained that mere use of the site is mental torture.
The controversial article, instead of questioning the “Indianness” of the company should have actually questioned the competitiveness and the quality of skill hired by Infosys. These persistent issues make one wonder how the company manages abroad? If this is the quality of its work for marquee Indian Govt work, how does it even manage to get work abroad? For us Indians, Infosys is a matter of pride and as desi as any company can get, so questioning their sub-par talent does not come easy.
This trouble with Infosys has highlighted the truth – this mass recruitment on the “campus” based purely on GPAs and aptitude tests which have no meaning, with no understanding of the work; all these lead to a talent pool which is not fit enough to do the work which the companies have taken on. When the talent pool is sub-par, how can we expect magic to happen?
We all unequivocally vote for Indian companies and believe that we should do all we can to support and nurture them but we all also give a big thumbs down to such incompetence.
The setback of Infosys is actually a setback for Atma Nirbhar India and a company of this caliber failing is the collective embarrassment of all us Indians.